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PDVSA Signs $2.2 Billion Oil Service Financing to Boost Drilling

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May 21 (Bloomberg) -- Petroleos de Venezuela SA, the country’s state oil company, signed financing deals worth $2.2 billion with oil service companies Schlumberger Ltd, Halliburton Co. and Weatherford International Ltd.

PDVSA, as the Caracas-based company is called, renewed a $1 billion credit line with Schlumberger, while the Halliburton and Weatherford arrangements are for $600 million each, Oil Minister Rafael Ramirez told reporters today at a conference in the city of Maracaibo.

“The companies will increase their activity in the country, in some cases doubling,” Ramirez said.

PDVSA is planning to invest $24 billion this year to boost capacity as it seeks to keep production at about 3 million barrels a day to comply with its OPEC quota, Ramirez said. Company officials from Repsol SA and Eni SpA are planning to visit the country next month to sign a deal related to the Perla 3X offshore natural gas well, he added.

The company intends to start natural gas exports to Colombia in July, Ramirez said.

PDVSA first signed the $1 billion rolling credit line with Schlumberger in May last year. It can be renewed each year, Ramirez said at the time.

To contact the reporter on this story: Pietro D. Pitts in Caracas at ppitts2@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: James Attwood at jattwood3@bloomberg.net Nathan Crooks

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